The marvels of modern technology

  Forum Editor 09:32 10 Feb 13

are so many, and come so rapidly, one after another, that it's easy to become a little blasé about them.

I'm probably right at the head of the queue where that's concerned, but just occasionally something happens that brings home to me how astonishing some of our advances are. That happened just now, when I read about how Nasa's Curiosity Mars rover has calmly drilled a hole in a rock on a planet that's currently around 60 million miles from earth, and sent us a high-definition image of the hole to prove it.

The technologies leading up to this seemingly simple act are even more amazing when you remember that it is just over 100 years since the first flight of a heavier than air machine.

The dust from the hole is now being analysed, and soon we'll know how that rock was formed, and when.

Something to wonder at over the Sunday morning bacon and eggs.

  Quickbeam 09:50 10 Feb 13

Never again will we take a hole in the road for granted!

  Aitchbee 09:53 10 Feb 13

A 99p 'drill dust collector' attachment would be an effective and efficient solution on Martian vertical rocky features.

  Forum Editor 10:52 10 Feb 13


Curiosity has a far more efficient dust collector built into the drill. It automatically retrieves dust from the hole and passes it back into the Rover's onboard laboratory for analysis.

Nobody's going to worry about a bit of dust spillage on an uninabited planet where there is lots of dust lying around anyway.

  nickf 11:14 10 Feb 13

Nobody's going to worry about a bit of dust spillage on an uninabited planet where there is lots of dust lying around anyway. you obviously haven't met my wife !

  Quickbeam 11:23 10 Feb 13

What marvel of technology did you use to do that with the text editor?

  Bing.alau 11:43 10 Feb 13

nickf. Nice to know that you are also likely to get dusted if you don't move. That makes two of us.

FE. Maybe it's all a con and really takes place down in Mexico or some other dusty, red desert, a bit like the supposed landing on the moon? (TIC)

  Quickbeam 11:47 10 Feb 13

Houston we have a conspiracy theory...

  Bing.alau 11:48 10 Feb 13

It's a nice neat hole though isn't it? When it fills up with mud will it be a black hole in space?

Seriously, I think the money could have been better spent on Earth improving the lives of its inhabitants. No doubt the answer will be that the money spent on technology now will improve our chances and the lives of earthlings later on. I suppose it is a matter of priority. But I think they have got their priorities wrong.

  muddypaws 11:50 10 Feb 13

At leat they didn't do it in rush hour.

  muddypaws 11:51 10 Feb 13


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